Israel blamed for killing of Hamas official in Dubai
February 2, 2010 1 Comment
By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
The Palestinian group Hamas says Israeli agents are behind the murder of one of its most senior commanders, whose body was discovered two weeks ago in a luxury Dubai hotel. Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, co-founder of Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing, was an important mediator in weapons procurement for the Palestinian group, which has controlled the Gaza strip since 2006. On January 19, al-Mabhouh arrived in the United Arab Emirates on a commercial flight from Damascus, Syria, where he had lived for the past several years. Interestingly, he was apparently traveling under his real name, and was unaccompanied by his usual bodyguard detail, which —intelNews hears– has led to speculation that al-Mabhouh was somehow lured to Dubai. His body was discovered by staff at the luxury Al-Bustan Rotana Hotel the following morning. The initial police report suggested heart attack as the cause of death. But a subsequent autopsy revealed traces of poison in al-Mabhoun’s blood, and suggested that the former Hamas commander was severely electrocuted and suffocated by more than one culprit. Hamas said that the killers, who traveled on the same flight that brought al-Mabhoun to Dubai, left the country before his body was discovered, using European passports. There has been no comment from the Israeli government about al-Mabhouh’s killing. Extrajudicial assassination methods are frequently employed by Israeli intelligence agency Mossad against a variety of Palestinian and other Arab and Iranian groups. But if Israeli agents were indeed behind the latest assassination, it would mark the first time that Israel has targeted a Hamas senior official anywhere outside of the Gaza strip.